Vine is Gone but Not Forgotten
It looks like Vine’s six seconds of fame are up. The Twitter-owned video platform announced today that they will discontinue their mobile app in the coming months. Logging onto Twitter today, you’ll likely be overwhelmed with people sharing their favorite Vines and lamenting the fate of the beloved app. But if we’re being honest, Vine was never meant to last. But that doesn’t mean it will have a lasting impact on content marketing, Internet culture, and — perhaps most notably — how we consume media in the modern era.
Alongside Twitter, Vine revolutionized the idea of shorter content. It put seemingly arbitrary limitations on the user, which prompted some truly engaging and creative videos. Within those six seconds, users saw possibilities — especially younger audiences. We saw a new breed of celebrity emerge with Vine Stars like Tyler Oakley, Brittany Furlan, and Nash Grier. With the massive success Vine spurred, it’s no wonder that competitors were quick to adapt to the new model. Instagram unveiled video features and Snapchat emerged to push attention spans even further with content that quite literally leaves your life immediately after you view it. It was only a matter of time that Vine became irrelevant with so many competitors learning from Vine’s model.
Brands were quick to jump on board with Vine and go after that key millennial demographic. Stop motion videos and pithy clips became a new standard – forcing companies to bring in their most creative minds to properly utilize the channel. It’s clear that Vine’s influence will outlive the platform, and for that we have to pay our respects. But where do we go from here? Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube continue to reign as the champions of video and marketers will no doubt absorb many of Vine’s core audiences until a new “it app” emerges. But no matter the platform, there are some key takeaways we can glean from the late, great Vine.
The Shorter the Better
On the outset, six second videos sounded a bit silly. YouTube already existed and allowed users to upload hours of footage – why the unnecessary limitation? Clearly the brains behind the app knew better than we all did. Quick and sharp content is the new standard. Sure, there are instances where long form content makes sense, but short content is the new general best practice.
Users aren’t likely to spend the time watching your 10-minute video, which is why Vine caught on so fast. The clips were designed to move at the speed of a user scrolling through their timeline. It doesn’t matter if you’re using Instagram or YouTube at this point – imply your own strict time-limits and keep your audience’s attention.
Encourage Innovative Approaches to Content
One of the most thrilling aspects of Vine was seeing how people would make use of the choppy, quick cut format. It could be brand’s creating fast moving, visual feasts or 15-year-olds cracking jokes with the selfie cam. The popularity of the videos showed just how much people love witty approaches to content. With the daily grind of trying to get the work in front of you done, Vine proves it’s important to set aside time to think of new and exciting approaches to your content.
Vine was also another step toward the seamlessness of people’s real lives and online lives. The interface of the app made it easy for people to document their lives on the go. Not just that, but it provided yet another outlet for people to respond to current events and trends.
It’s a mindset that’s going to continue to be a dominant force in marketing, especially now that live streaming apps like Periscope have already blown up. Businesses and marketers will need to continue down this path if they hope to retain relevancy and Vine’s successors provide ample opportunities to do so.
Today the Internet will mourn the loss of Vine before we all get distracted by the next shiny object to come into view. But long after it becomes a distant memory, we’ll still be reeling from the way it changed how we create and engage with media on a daily basis. Vine is dead. Long live Vine.